Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo has suggested that the time has come for new younger management to take over the running of Formula 1.
Amid a desire to see the sport get some fresh impetus to attract a wider audience, di Montezemolo has suggested that F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone should ease his grip of the sport.
"We need people with a more modern view," di Montezemolo was quoted as saying by The Independent. "It is the same in my company. In a couple of years I will no longer be the person for Ferrari. Someone else will come.
"What I always say to Bernie is that the one-man show in life is finished. You need a team around you. We have to ask these questions in a positive way and look ahead. Sooner or later it will happen to Bernie as to me."
Di Montezemolo believes that F1 should think carefully about the venues it races at - as he questions the value of racing in countries where there is little enthusiasm for the sport among the public.
"Three years ago, I was so impressed when I was invited to open Le Mans," he said. "It was a party. You go to the pits in some circuits in F1 and it's like a desert.
"Do you think it good that we race in the middle of nowhere? Without the public, without the fans, the flags, the passion, it is cold. I don't like it.
"Bernie is always upset when I say this but listen, today, if you have a girlfriend, say 20-years-old, with low-fare airlines you can go around the world for less money than a long weekend in Monza. This should not be possible any more.
"The world is changing a lot. Ferrari want to play a role in the future. In terms of the competition this year, the return to the United States, this season has been very good.
"But you have to look to the future. The time to make decisions about the future is when you have success.
"If you don't, you are forced to make them when you are in trouble and that is bad. We are very close to opening a new page in the future of Formula 1, acknowledging the good work that Bernie has done but moving on."
Di Montezemolo also suggested that if German prosecutors investigating bribery allegations in the Gerhard Gribkowsky affair do decide to take further action against Ecclestone, then the F1 supremo should step down.
"First of all, I hope for Bernie and F1 that nothing will happen," he said. "If Bernie is accused under process I think he will be the first to give a step back in the interests of Formula 1. This could be bad for F1."
- Sports & Recreation
- Luca di Montezemolo
- Bernie Ecclestone